Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict: What Participants Say

Portrait of Tarek Tawil Portrait of Tarek Tawil

19 May 2020

Tarek Tawil is a humanitarian practitioner, specialized in the protection of refugees and internally displaced persons during and following armed conflicts.

He worked with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) and the United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) during the conflict in Syria between 2014 and 2019, and more recently as a Humanitarian Affairs Consultant at the Headquarters of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). Currently, Tarek is involved, as a Research Associate, in the Counter-Terror research project conducted by Professor Gloria Gaggioli at the University of Geneva.

Tarek holds a master in humanitarian action, a diploma in international affairs and diplomacy, and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering.

Why did you choose the Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict?

For humanitarian practitioners like me, understanding the international legal framework during armed conflicts is fundamental to better design humanitarian response strategies; to plan access to the affected population trapped in hostile situations; and to advocate protecting and ensuring their rights according to the different branches of international law.

Considering the contemporary nature of armed conflicts, characterized by the rise of non-state actors, counter-terrorism campaigns, transnational armed conflicts, and mass-influxes of people in need of special protection, knowing how to apply the different modern legal arguments is becoming more and more vital. This is why I decided to follow this programme. Its flexibility and the diversity of participants’ profiles, which enriches the knowledge exchange (e.g. humanitarians, human rights advocates, diplomats, etc.), also explain my choice.

Does it Respond to your expectations?

The programme is designed and structured in a very comprehensive and interactive way. The knowledge provided throughout is built on the interplay between international refugee law, international humanitarian law (IHL), international human rights law, international criminal law and public international law, after having studied each branch separately.It also gives space to exchange ideas and to discuss critically contemporary trends from different positions, which I really appreciate.

Enrolling in this programme was the right decision and it perfectly met my expectations. Thankfully to the programme, I was able to build my legal knowledge, develop my critical thinking, and widen my horizon when analysing armed conflicts, considering different branches of international law and the interaction between them.

What are the Highlights of the Programme?

I really appreciate the practical approach of the programme in which we analyse different real-time cases. This is especially tangible when studying IHL, the interplay between IHL and human rights, combating terrorism and violent extremism, and public international law on the use of force (jus ad bellum).

A Moment you Particularly Enjoyed?

The topic of countering terrorism and its impact on human rights is of special interest to me. This was perfectly covered during the course on combating terrorism and violent extremism, and the course on the use of force against terrorism. The controversies of this phenomenon and the modern debates and positions between human rights defenders, states, and international organizations were critically discussed. Addressing this topic was one of my best enjoyable times of the programme.

What will it Bring to your Career?

I will apply the legal knowledge I gained and the analysis skills I developed throughout the programme in my humanitarian duties. I have learned how to utilize a complementary approach between IHL, human rights and international refugee law to better promote the protection of civilians during armed conflicts. Additionally, understanding the different legal narratives to justify the use of force and self-defence will help me to better analyse armed conflicts and its legal consequences. At another level, this programme is also the occasion to open more opportunities in the sphere of international affairs and to advance my career to assume higher responsibilities.

Would you Recommend it?

I highly recommend this programme to all humanitarians, human rights defenders or diplomats who have the ambition and will to develop their legal knowledge and advance their careers to assume greater responsibilities.

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

First class of the Executive Master in International Law in Armed Conflict News

Executive Master: 44 Professionals Start their Learning Journey in Geneva and Online

6 October 2020

For the 2020-2021 academic year, 18 practitioners will follow the programme in Geneva and 26 online.

Read more

Desk with a folder and a pen News

78 New Students Start their Academic Year in Geneva and Online

14 September 2020

The 78 students of our LLM in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights and MAS in Transitional Justice, Human Rights and the Rule of Law are starting their classes this week, both in Geneva and online.

Read more

Mali,  Gao region, Ansongo cercle, Fafa. ICRC dissemination session about international humanitarian law for the army of Mali. Event

Thinking out of the (Tool)Box: Promoting Implementation of and Respect for International Humanitarian Law

11 November 2020, 18:00-19:30

This IHL Talk aims at shining light on the various ways of promoting respect for and implementation of international humanitarian law.

Read more

Computer code Event

Launch Event: Joint Initiative on the Digitalization of Conflict

29 October 2020, 10:00-12:00

This panel discussion marks the Launch of our New Research Initiative, carried out jointly by our Swiss IHL Chair Robin Geiß and the ICRC.

Read more

Ukraine, damaged bicycle and car in front of a destroyed building Short Course

Protection of Persons and Property in International Armed Conflict

6 November - 11 December 2020

This short course, which can be followed in Geneva or online, examines the conduct of hostilities in situations of international armed conflict, also known as the Law of The Hague.

Read more

A wide view of the UN Security Council Short Course

Sanctions in Public International Law

19 February - 26 March 2021

This short course, which can be followed in Geneva or online, provides an introduction to the regime of sanctions under international law and their effectiveness in addressing contemporary forms of conflict. It addresses the questions related to state responsibility, the pacific settlement of international disputes and the role of the International Court of Justice.

Read more

Putis, Peru. The clothes of missing child found in a mass grave close to the village at the exhibition organized for the relatives of victimes. The family will be able to identify their missing relatives. Project

INVESTIGATING IN SITUATIONS OF ARMED CONFLICT: Law, Policy and Good Practice

Completed in January 2014

This project, initiated in 2014 by the Swiss Chair of International Humanitarian Law, Professor Noam Lubell, intends to identify, via expert meetings and research, a set of best practices that states should apply when they investigate or examine alleged violations or misconduct in situations of armed conflict.

Read more

A session of the UN Human Rights Committtee at Palais Wilson Project

Implementing International Humanitarian Law Through Human Rights Mechanisms

Started in April 2019

Resulting from traditional legal research and informal interviews with experts, the project aims at examining how – if at all possible – IHL could be more systematically, appropriately and correctly dealt with by the human rights mechanisms emanating from the Charter of the United Nations, as well from universal and regional treaties.

Read more

Cover page of the manual Publication

#ESCR AND #SDGs: Practical Manual on the Role of UN Human Rights Mechanisms in Monitoring the SDGs that Seek to Realize Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

published on July 2020

Christophe Golay

Read more

Cover of the publication Publication

Beyond the 2020 Treaty Body Review: The Role of National Human Rights Systems

published on June 2020

Domenico Zipoli

Read more